Prediction blog: Army-Navy

Army is sticking to its game plan, coach Jeff Monken.

The Black Knights aren’t making any drastic changes on the defense after Navy lost its starting quarterback Will Worth and offensive captain and starting slotback Toneo Gulley in the American Athletic Conference championship last Saturday.

Monken expects sophomore quarterback Zach Abey in his first college start to run Navy’s offense efficiently.

“What Will Worth did this year for them (a nation-leading 25 touchdowns) was just a remarkable job,” Monken said. “He had a great season. But, Abey is going to coming in and he’s going to do a great job. We were in the same situation playing Chris (Carter, then a freshman) in this game. Chris performed really well and gave us a chance to win the football game. I don’t think they are going to change what they do and I don’t think we can anticipate or try to come up with other things that they might do. We have to prepare for what they have done and what they have done really well and hope that will good enough.”

Army (6-5) is coming off two-week bye following a 60-3 win over Division I-AA Morgan State on Nov. 19.

Navy has played seven consecutive weeks. It’s the first time that Navy hasn’t had an extra week to prepare for Army since 1941. Crazy stat.

The Midshipmen have lost opening-day quarterback Tago Smith (knee), linebacker and defensive captain Danny Gonzalez (right foot), wide receiver Tyler Carmona, slotback Daryl Bonner, slotback Josh Brown (left ankle), slotback Josh Walker (left shoulder), safety Kyle Battle (left knee), linebacker Mike Kelly (right shoulder), kicker DJ Grant-Johnson (right knee) and offensive tackle Robert Lindsey (back) to go along with Worth and Gulley.

Sal Interdonato (Times Herald-Record Army football beat writer): Army 24, Navy 17. Sticking with my pick from a radio spot on Friday. This is Army’s best defense since its 2010 Armed Forces Bowl team. A strong start on offense is imperative. If this turns into a field-goal game, Navy has a decided edge on special teams.

Kevin Gleason (Times Herald-Record sports editor): Army 26, Navy 24

Josh Conklin (Sports photographer): Army 17, Navy 14. This is usually a low scoring game. Army has the upper hand coming off a win in their last game. Navy is coming off a loss to Temple, who Army beat in the first game of the season.

Predictions from around the college football universe
Pete Fiutak ( Navy 26, Army 16
Kevin McGuire (Athlon Sports): Navy 23, Army 20
Steve Silverman (Bleacher Report): Army 21, Navy 20

For more on Army football, follow me on Twitter, Instagram, Periscope and SoundCloud @salinterdonato. Started a Facebook page, solely for Army coverage. Here’s the link.

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